This past Saturday, I traveled to Boston to attend a seminar about Kybella, the revolutionary “double chin” treatment. The multiple speakers at this event were all experts from around the country who have had significant experience with Kybella, including involvement with the original FDA approval studies.
One of the speakers was a plastic surgeon from New York. In fact, one of his comments inspired the title of this post.
During this plastic surgeon’s presentation, he described that before Kybella, the only option for treating the “double chin” area was surgery of various types. These surgeries were obviously very invasive, expensive, and required significant downtime.
With Kybella, fat is removed by the process of literally melting it from the effects of the medication. The result is equivalent to (yes, you guessed it) “surgery in a syringe”.
Like many other treatments I perform here at Maine Laser Skin Care, Kybella is non-surgical and minimally invasive, but significantly impactful on problem areas of appearance. An increasing proportion of cosmetic procedures are becoming non-surgical as they are less expensive, less risky, and with less downtime than their surgical counterparts. In 2015, 85% of all cosmetic procedures were non-surgical, which is a 44% increase from 5 years ago.
Of all the aesthetic problems about which people complain, over 25% of all adults and 67% of all people who have had aesthetic treatments complain about their “double chin”. While most of the people who get Kybella treatments are women, about 40% are men, which is much higher than the 10% rate for most other cosmetic procedures.
“Double chins”, also known as submental fullness, result from multiple factors. Weight gain is probably the most obvious factor, but frustratingly, even if you lose weight, the fat under the chin often persists.
Genetics are another significant factor, as many thin people still develop a pocket of fat under the chin due to their heredity. Finally, aging causes loose skin and fat in the neck to get pulled down by gravity over time.
The speakers at the Boston conference discussed recent studies about the effectiveness of Kybella and its satisfaction rate. On a scale of 0-4 rating their “double chin” areas, 68.2% of Kybella patients noted a one-grade or better response after each treatment session, and 16% reported a two-grade improvement after one session.
Taking the full range of patients who have different amounts of fat in the submental or “double chin” area, the average number of treatments needed is 2 to 4 sessions. However, after their last treatment, 79% of patients are highly satisfied with their results and concluded that the treatments and expense were well worth it.
The speakers also emphasized that Kybella not only works as a non-surgical treatment for the “double chin”, but is also permanent. Once the fat is gone, it is gone for good in that area even if the person treated gains weight overall.
There are very few other treatments that can be considered a permanent solution to one of life’s most aggravating cosmetic problems. Coolsculpting, which freezes and kills fat within the body, is one of the few exceptions.
Finally, another point of emphasis in this seminar was that no two chins are the same, and that Kybella can be adjusted for each individual patient. The ability to customize the number of injections and the area treated (depending on the amount of fat under the chin) produces results that can treat the most troubling symptoms.
Even though I have been using Kybella for over a year, attending this seminar gave me some tips from those with more experience and allowed me to network with other doctors in my field from around New England and the country. I have complete confidence that the market for Kybella will continue to grow, as the “double chin” is a very common problem area for which there is now a permanent and high-satisfaction solution.
If you are wondering if you may be a candidate for Kybella, or if your “double chin” just bugs the heck out of you, please call us at (207) 873-2158 to schedule a free and confidential consultation with me. I will examine your photos and your neck, and then give you my best medical opinion on how Maine Laser Skin Care can help you.